04 Oct 2012

david marcus paypalInteresting post by David Marcus, President at Paypal on LinkedIn – laying out what he’s trying to do to change Paypal – to turn the tanker is harder than ” a kart”:

  1. Set a destination. Communicate it simply.
  2. Repeat. Again, and again.
  3. Lead the way. Show how it’s done. Get your hands dirty.
  4. Build a new value system, where doing more with less is rewarded, vs. creating fiefdoms.

It reminded me of research I posted some while back – so here’s my top 10 things leaders do to transform large scale businesses.

1) Leadership built on uncompromising values

Leaders give absolute clarity and simplicity in their challenge and vision such that anyone can understand. They insist on the values being lived.

2) Leaders start externally

Ask the customers – nearly always the first step in creating awareness of dissatisfaction, and what to fix first and with what importance. It usually requires experiential learning as well so internal people “get it”.

3) Leaders keep learning what to do?

They ask the frontline staff – they know what ought to be done to achieve the challenge – this is at the heart of change working well .

The leader doesn’t ask what changes to make, but sets out clearly where they’re going and consults extensively on how people think they can get the business there. He/she uses this to set up continuous processes for this kind of consultation and listening in order to “change the change” later.

4) Leaders support and equip their people

Support the change with the right resources and training – so each person feels equipped to do the new things. Frontline management and middle management usually need more training and coaching than frontline staff.

5) Leaders plan to win

Make sure each person has time to do the job the new way, taking account of the fact that. “its not something else on top of what you do, it’s the new way you do it”. Adequate resource planning means people can do a great job.

6)Leaders change what gets attention

Support the change by measuring different things differently. Measure individuals on things they can affect, not the things they can’t

7) Leaders plan slow, act fast

The timescales are much sharper than would be first seen as reasonable – after the plan has been formulated, not before. It takes a long time to consult and communicate and that shouldn’t be cut short if the change is to be sustainable

8) Leaders communicate endlessly

Massive amounts of formal and informal communication. The comms plan is as big as the project plan.

9) Leaders review and change

Proper planning & review. Communications planning and stakeholder comms. Constantly “changing the change” with feedback. Most project managers don’t have the necessary change skills and need training in many cases

10) Leaders have stamina and consistency

Each decision, made along the way, sticks to the values and vision. Any deviation introduces cynicism.

What do you think?

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